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  • Dec 21, 2014
  • Updated: 2:47pm

Asiana plane crash

On Saturday, July 6 2013, an Asiana Airlines Boeing 777 carrying mostly Chinese passengers crashed and burst into flames as it landed short of the runway at San Francisco International Airport. Two teenage girls were killed and more than 180 people were injured.


South Korean TV presenter says it's 'lucky' that only Chinese died in Asiana crash

A South Korean television presenter attracts wide criticism from both Korean and Chinese internet users for remarks on plane crash

PUBLISHED : Monday, 08 July, 2013, 3:18pm
UPDATED : Monday, 08 July, 2013, 3:38pm

Internet users have reacted strongly against a South Korean television presenter who said on air it was “lucky” that only Chinese people had died in Saturday’s Asiana Airlines plane accident.

“It’s been reported that two Chinese people, not Koreans, were killed in the plane crash,” said Yoon Kyeong-min, a reporter for South Korean network Channel A during a Saturday broadcast. “If we look at it from our point of view, this is lucky.”

The comment sparked controversy amongst Korean audiences right after it aired, reported the Global Times citing the Korean Economic Daily. Korean netizens lashed out at Yoon and called the remark “inhuman”.

“What will Chinese people do if they see this broadcast?” several commentators asked. They said that referring to the incident as “lucky” was inexcusable, especially considering the young ages of the Chinese victims.

Sina Weibo reactions to news of the broadcast, which went viral on Sunday and Monday, were equally scathing.

“They need to issue an apology to the Chinese public!” one Weibo user wrote. “And they must apologise to the families of the victims!”

Others were more sympathetic and said that the comment had probably been an off-hand remark that was now being taken out of context.

“Let’s look at this from a different perspective,” one poster wrote. “If it had been a Chinese airline and two passengers had died, would we rather that they be Korean [foreigners] or our own countrymen? This is all that the broadcaster meant.”

Responding to the media outcry, Channel A issued an official statement regarding the remark on Sunday, Joongang Daily reported.

"We apologise that we did not report the news smoothly during the live broadcast of the Asiana Airlines crash,” the statement read. “[We] would like to note that when we said it was fortunate in our case that there were no Koreans among those killed, it was a simply a comment for emphasis. We apologise to our viewers.”

Channel A is a broadcasting company owned by Dong-a Llbo, one of South Korea’s leading newspapers. Many of the company’s recent broadcasts have revolved around the Asiana Airlines plane disaster, a tragedy for one of South Korea’s major airlines that has claimed the lives of two 16-year-old Chinese students. Investigations into the cause of the accident are still ongoing.

Additional reporting by Christy Choi and Olivia Rosenman.


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This article is now closed to comments

Sticks Evans
The only way to stop this type of thinking and statement is with your wallets. Just stop buying Samsung and LG etc... for a few months and using their airlines etc...That sends a message to their government that this is not acceptable behavior and will not be tolerated and the public will impose their own economic sanctions and not wait for their governments to respond to this type of statement. We are all humans and it is a tragedy whatever the race of the victims. Not nice or appropriate in any situation.
There was a Jewish store owner on 125th street in Harlem who did quite well selling clothes to the local black and Hispanic community of the neighborhood for many years. He said something racist in public and the local folks did not like it and stopped shopping there. He went broke in 2 months. This was in the 1980's in NYC. A good lesson of the power of the average person who decides not to spend where prejudice exists. I am not an anti-Semite in case a commentator decides to chime in. My mother was Jewish but I supported the neighborhood for closing the old man down because he had been nasty to people in his store. He was ignorant.
Does not matter who you are. All people should be treated with dignity and respect. Shows the ignorance of the reporter. An apology will not work. Perhaps something more than an apology could be offered by the news station and the reporter to make up for the shameful statement.
It is the perception of Chinese by the presenter that caused a slip of the tongue. Why such perception in picking out Chinese over others to be alright for the deadly accident? To the presenter, individual Chinese hardly exists. The 1.3 billion Chinese do. Chinese life is as the saying goes: comes a dime a dozen. There is much to ponder on when others don’t see you as individual but always just part of 1.3 billion. To be angry is pretty useless.
WTF!!! so you guys are anti chinese too?
Your story about the Jewish store owner just refuted my belief that massive Chinese population invites contempt from others. Jews, small in population as they are have been prejudiced massively almost worldwide for a longest time. Could Chinese act like Jews?
Sticks Evans
Sorry don't quite understand. I was using the example of the Jewish store owner of his contempt for his customers and then the customers rose up against him not because of his race but because of his comments and insensitivity to his surroundings. Not acceptable and they responded in a proactive way. They shopped in friendlier stores.
I feel the Korean reporters were totally insensitive to Chinese people everywhere with his comments and was pointing to an example I witnessed of when one race insults another and how the other race responded and punished the others for insensitivity.
I think China will surprise the world in the most wonderful way in time. No need to look elsewhere for guidance or example. They can look within.
If it were my station I would fire a reporter for saying such a thing.
A Chinese friend said: it's (plane crash death) okay because we have billion of people. it's no a big loss for us.
"They said that referring to the incident as 'lucky' was inexcusable, especially considering the young ages of the Chinese victims."
Ageist much?
umiru bolno.
Agreed with your view. Unfortunately the statement from the station is so lame leading me to doubt their sincerity.
umiru bolno...
"There was a Jewish store owner on 125th street in Harlem who did quite well ... He said something racist in public ...local folks .... stopped shopping there. He went broke in 2 months." This account is not credible. You don't have a successful business for years and then go broke in two months. Which could have happened is that the businessman saw his business drop off so precipitously he decided to shut down two months after the incident. Despite the businessman's comments, he was more likely than not doing a good thing by local people in running his shop. Most people would not want to go into areas like that. He was willing to take that risk and aggrevation. Had he not located in these areas local people would have to have traveled further away to get the goods he sold. Actions speak louder than words.
From the historical record we now know that American Presidents Truman and Nixon made anti-Semitic , but through their actions both Presidents provided critical help to the state of Israel. Those comments are now largely forgotten, but the success of the state of Israel is at least in part due to the critical help received from these two Presidents.


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